i love this topic! above 5 years ago TBP (admin) i had a contest for MB users to point out in a video where my friends life was saved by a face mask.
i (TBP admin) was living in taiwan and importing hardshells and IKs. even before that as and toying around in their rivers i quickly noted a need for face masks. the rocks were razor sharp from daily landslides, the rivers were creeks and shallow most of the time, the users were inexperienced (to boating, dangers, and general being whacked in the face accidentally by your fellow boaters' paddles). i couldn't find a local supplier, Prijon resold a metal one, so did Wildwasser but then i contacted Riddell who allowed me to be their importer to taiwan so i picked them. when you've got your friends and loved ones and girlfriend it's about not letting them get hurt than style.
i am a detail technical person like fishnphil, ALL after market masks are screwed in with SCREWS that are mini arrows and i wondered in a heave impact could the screw be driven into the head? but when i got my first Riddell samples i noted that even the NFL use the same mask and the same attachment method so i defaulted to it would be impossible for the screw to be impaled into skull/face. i also noted that all the standard whitewater helmets already have some rivets which are the same as little sharp arrows. even a plastic buckle could be impaled into throat cause more injury if it went there. but not having this safety gear would be far worse than to go without it.
i had a rule in my club, no face mask you went allowed on our trips.
as taiwan became more westernized and i wasn't the only one taking taiwanese on river trips, foreigners were showing up with USA gear. i noticed each year the helmets would get smaller, less area protection... did you notice the sort of same with motorcycle helmets. full face went to 3/4 went to a bennie shell, (almost less than a 1/2 shell. it's partially rebellion to start laws requiring helmets and i'm going to get the smallest helmet i can to show them! partly by someone who's never been in a crash. at age 11 my parents bought me a honda CT 70, helmet not included, and i rode that to high heaven until i crashed head on with a full body armor teenager on a Hodaka 125 Super Combat on a blind tall grass corner. now, i love adventure but i try to be as safe as possible with all gear and helmet with face protection is the #1 gear. it's just not worth it to me to have less. what taiwanese girl would want to kiss me if i had no teeth LOL!
you NEVER should have started this topic, i've got more stories plus will come back later with MORE LOL!
imported to taiwan from USA and germany were way to expensive and it was a miserable nightmare for me. then my girlfriend said "my uncle has a plastic injection factory and he made a helmet for a foreigner 10 years ago". i'm not positive but i believe this is how it was back then, most USA/euro helmets were polyproylene plastic. the uncle explained to me he'd do ABS plastic which was much stronger and the thickness was higher than Protech sample i showed him. also he said he'd line it with the best foam on the market. (there's a big diff in the foam lining in helmet which are as important as the shell). he was not impressed at all with the helmet i showed him. but i'd been using that for years and it probably was a low end i got from Western Mountaineering in San Jose CA which is now gone. he showed me how much better his shin strap would be too. we didn't really get any deal just because it was her uncle, i told him i appreciated his advice, work and made sure we'd pay his normal item cost. including delivery to our store the helmet cost us about USD1.30 but the minimum order was QTY 500. not one of those helmets every broke, many are still using them because they are high quality UV stabilzed. when other water sports in taiwan saw i had those helmet they were coming to us.
who cares what you look like, the point is to live and enjoy being with your friends and family.
opinion expressed is solely mine, admin, and NOT TBP company.
because of music put in vids youtube has removed from listing, deleted, banned, filtered out music... and who knows how long this will remain. it's a shame, i no longer have source and can't edit it. it was fine and entertainment for viewers for nearly 20 years but now slowly all these are being removed. at 5:08 a Riddell full face mask saved a friends life.